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(Starbounders #1)

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  284 ratings  ·  32 reviews
Zachary Night has been waiting his whole life for this moment. Like his family before him, he's finally headed to Indigo 8, a top secret training center where future Starbounders learn the skills to protect the galaxy. But being a Starbounder is no walk on the moon. No sooner has Zachary mastered the warp glove basics than a mission into space goes wrong and puts him and h ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published June 4th 2013 by HarperCollins
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4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  284 ratings  ·  32 reviews

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Emily Leathers
Quite enjoyable actually, though clearly a popcorn book for middle-graders.

Slight (view spoiler)
Jun 10, 2018 rated it liked it
I, personally, wasn't extremely fond of this book, being a 13 year old female. I loved reading Ender's Game and I was hoping for a similar experience what with the Indigo 8 training academy for space fighting, etc. Of course, I also read Ender's Game in 3rd grade and I was expecting a more YA-aimed book. This book strikes me as very much middle grade, more specifically for boys in middle grade, I would suppose, though Kaylee provides a very present character for female readers. I think one of th ...more
May 06, 2018 rated it liked it
I remember reading and enjoying the Familiars books for their focus on character and tight plot amidst an interesting world. This keeps the tight plot and interesting world, but lets the characters fall just slightly. They're still there, don't get me wrong— they just took a backseat. It was an entertaining book for the short time it lasted, and it was a creative take on a familiar idea. Unfortunately, not as good as it could have been.
Apr 13, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: middle-school
Zachary finally gets to go to the Starbounder Academy where he will learn to be a space traveler and within a month he is punished by being sent, along with a couple of friends (also newbies) to clean a freighter on a routine mission. After being kidnapped, the trip becomes anything but routine. Zachary must use his wit, courage and the little knowledge he has accumulated to fight for his life and save his planet.
Jul 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi, fantasy
Great! Mixes space and magic, and lots of adventure and laughs :)
Becky B
Jun 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Zachary Night just started at Indigo-8, a top secret Starbounders' academy, training the next wave of beings who will protect the universe. Zachary comes from a long line of famous Nights who have distinguished themselves for bravery in defending the universe from planet crushers and unfriendly races. He's got big expectations to fill. Of course, Zachary can't resist a good challenge from fellow Starbounder Kalley and roommate Ryic, even if it does mean breaking a few rules. The trio soon regret ...more
Ms. Yingling
Zachary is thrilled to finally be able to attend the Starbounders academy, and is quick to make friends, but also quick to get into trouble. When he, Kaylee, and alien Ryic run afoul of Loren, they find themselves on clean up duty while their classmates go on their first field trip. Things get worse when they are inadvertently kidnapped by Skold, an alien in a humanoid carapace who sells space ships, most of which he has stolen. Skold's not a completely bad guy, and helps the kids when they unco ...more


Imagine that there is a secret "outerverse" beyond our own universe, a place in space that is hidden from even the most astute astronomer. Now imagine that preteens are trained to work in said space with aliens from other planets! Yes, in Starbounders, teens are trained to be "kids in black"! Zachary comes from a family of fighters that are sworn to protect the universe from evil. As Zachary moves into his new school to continue his education after eighth grade. The
I an not rating this book because I have mixed feelings. This book may appeal to middle school boys who are Star Wars fans. The description on the back says it is a mixture of Percy Jackson and Star Wars. I understand the Star Wars comparison but did not see any similarities with the Percy Jackson books. To be honest, I am not sure where the publishers got that comparison from.

In my opinion the first 70 pages were slow. I am not sure if they kids reading it will hang in until the action starts.
Apr 26, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Zachary Night is one of the new Starbounder recruits at Indigo 8 (a super top secret earthbound base for the Inter Planetary Defense League, or IPDL.) Zachary hopes he will be able to follow in his families footsteps by training to protect the galaxy against "outerverse threats." Yet, things go wrong during a mission and Zachary, Kaylee and Ryic end up kidnapped by thugs armed with voltage slingshots and sonic crossbows. To make matters worse they also stumble onto a plot to destroy Indigo 8 its ...more
Feb 21, 2014 rated it it was ok
Zachary Night is eager to get started in the family business - becoming a Starbounder. During his first week at school, he makes friends with bunkmate Ryic, a very elastic alien, and Kaylee Swanson, who is very competitive. When they are punished for being on the starchery range without supervision, they are sentenced to one week janitorial duties on a dreadnought and no chance for their first space safari. When the ship is hijacked by Skold and his minions, epic adventures and life and death dr ...more
Mar 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Zachary has been waiting his whole life to get to Indigo 8, an elite secret training school for kids whose futures will be in fighting off alien beings who want to take over the Earth. The problem becomes very real, though, when the camp itself is invaded and it's up to Zachary and his friends to figure out how to identify and oust the villains and bring peace back to his world.

Lots of action, sometimes more than might logically flow but kids aren't going to notice. Zachary and his friends do ha
Sep 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
Starbounders is a fun book for children who enjoy "Star Wars," "Star Trek," and other science fiction space series. Authors Adam Jay Epstein and Andrew Jacobson did a good job creating a realistic world in which Zachary Night follows in his family's footsteps at Indigo 8, a secret training center for Starbounders who work to keep our planet and the rest of the galaxy safe. Set on proving that he belongs in the program and that he can live up to his family's success, Zachary soon finds himself in ...more
Sep 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book knows its audience and delivers. There is a lot of action, including violence, treachery and murders.
You have to suspend disbelief as you often have to in other material written for this age group such as Harry Potter or Percy Jackson (Why does saving the world fall to students - particularly a girl, a male main character and a sidekick?). If you don't question too much and go along with the story, you will find there are enough ups and downs and mystery to keep you entertained to the
Apr 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I received this book free through Goodreads First Reads.

I was hoping that the 'Star Wars meets Percy Jackson' blurb was not true. -Thankfully it was not true. When I read about the book, I thought of Tenchi (Muyo!). Sure enough, this book was more of a Jonny, Hadji, and Jessie (the Quest kids) thrown into a Galaxy Police setting like Tenchi.

It was a fast read, and an enjoyable adventure. The kids are likable and entertaining. Enough so, that another Starbounders story would be something to loo
Sep 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: middle-grade
My son and I rate this one 4 stars. We just finished it as a read-a-loud tonight. Unfortunately, we started our read-a-loud tradition with Winn Dixie and Percy Jackson, and is been hard to top those! STARBOUNDERS was a mix of Percy Jackson and Star Wars, only not as good. It was missing the "voice" that Percy/Rick Riordan does so well, and it wasn't nearly as epic as Star Wars. But it was fun, full of adventure and imagination, and made for a great reading experience for my son and me.
I'm really not sure what to think of this book. On the one hand, it's a rollicking interplanetary shoot-em-up adventure. On the other hand, out MCs are vigilante child soldiers who leave their enemies to asphyxiate and torture their prisoners. So uh. Hm.

Also, why can't his Deaf sister go to the cool military academy? They have teachers who are on fire, can't they adapt for lack of hearing? GRUMP.
Apr 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book is billed as Star Wars meets Percy Jackson. Not so much. If I were going to compare this book to anything, it would be the H.I.V.E. series by Mark Walden. But instead of supervillain school, it's more like a Star Trek Federation academy. I enjoyed it, and look forward to reading the sequels, of which (I am sure) there will be many.
Aug 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Honest to goodness science fiction with spaceships, aliens and everything. Zachary North follows in the family tradition and attends Indigo 8 a top secret training center for future Starbounders. At this exclusive school the students learn the skills to keep the galaxy safe from the deadly outerverse aliens and other miscreants. Tired of magic schools then read about space school.
Jul 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
"Starbounders" is the first of what promises to be an exciting, fun and action filled series about Zachary Night, a Starbounder in training. Along with his newly found friends, Kaylee and Ryic, he is thrust, warp glove first, into a plot to destroy Earth. Their adventure is filled with aliens, battles, and humor. A great, fast moving summer read for the 8 to 12 year old sci fi fan.
Jun 12, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting, and exciting. Something that you wouldn't ordinarily find!!

It was amazing the way that they made a whole new world for the setting of this story! It is now one of my favorite books!!
Debra Dahlgren Rowand
Good "boy" with my son. Outer space adventures and non-stop action. Like Star Wars? You'll like this!
P Smith
Feb 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
May 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: middle-grade, sci-fi
hitchhiker's guide meets men in black.
The Brothers
Jan 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: asher-read, want
Asher (8yo) LOVED this book.
Zechariah Davis
Aug 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I did not expect a lot from this book it was a book I saw and said why not. And it is now one of my favorites now. It was a very good ready !!!!!!! :)
Jul 03, 2014 marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2014-new
Mar 13, 2015 rated it it was ok
was soooooooooooooo boring hated it :(
Noel Roach
Mar 18, 2015 rated it liked it
2.5 Stars. Definately for the younger (pre-teen) reader.
Mar 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Reluctant readers will like the action in this series. Disappointing for Familiars fans.
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I grew up in Great Neck, NY loving all things fantasy and science fiction - from Dungeons and Dragons and the Legend of Zelda to Star Wars and Dr. Strange. I created and imagined new worlds and stories from an early age but never knew that I had the talent to be a writer until seventh grade, when my English teacher assigned our class to write the first ten pages of a sequel to The Good Earth. Afte ...more

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Starbounders (2 books)
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“Interesting,” Ryic said. “Most humans don’t have a taste for Flobian roach brain.” 0 likes
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